The International League of Peoples’ Struggle in Canada issued the following statement in solidarity with Palestinian prisoner Ahmad Sa’adat and his fellow Palestinians in Israeli jails as part of the International Days of Action in solidarity with Sa’adat, from 13-15 January. The days mark the 15th anniversary of Sa’adat’s imprisonment by the Palestinian Authority at the behest of Israel, the US and UK; today, Sa’adat is imprisoned in Israeli prison serving a 30-year sentence and a leader of the Palestinian prisoners’ movement as well as a national leader. Aiyanas Ormond, the chair of ILPS Canada, also participated via Skype in the Waterloo, Ontario opening of the new International Office of the 32 County Sovereignty Movement on 15 January, speaking about Ahmad Sa’adat and the struggle to free political prisoners:

ILPS in Canada and its member organizations join with progressive people around the world in calling for freedom for Palestinian political leader Ahmad Sa’adat and all Palestinian prisoners held in the occupation jails.

This month marks 15 years since Comrade Sa’adat, the Secretary General of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, was abducted by Palestinian Authority security forces working ‘in security cooperation’ with the Israeli Occupation.   He is just one of 7000 Palestinian prisoners currently held in the Occupation jails.  This number includes 400 children prisoners, and 720 ‘administrative detainees’ who are held without any formal charge or even access to the illegal and illegitimate ‘due process’ of the Occupation courts.  A large number of these Palestinian prisoners are, like Sa’adat, imprisoned purely on the basis of their membership in a Palestinian organization that resists the Israeli colonization and occupation of their homeland.

Palestinian prisoners collectively symbolize the steadfastness and determination of the Palestinian struggle for freedom and are an important source of political leadership for the resistance to the occupation.  Comrade Sa’adat is recognized as a leader among Palestinian prisoners and in the Palestinian national movement for his outstanding commitment to the total liberation of his people and their homeland.  While he rejects the legitimacy of the Israeli Occupation to imprison him, he refuses to have his freedom used as a pawn in negotiations that would further entrench the occupation or give further concessions to the Zionist State:

“I refuse to be released on the basis of a ‘condition for negotiations’ and I will not accept the price for my freedom to be several meters of the land of Palestine, the land that we have fought for and been imprisoned for. I refuse to be free on the condition of the expansion of settlements. I refuse this offer, not even a single house for Zionist settlers will be built as the price of my freedom.” – Ahmad Sa’adat, from Gilboa Prison

Today we join the collective call for international action for the freedom of Ahmad Sa’adat and all Palestinian political prisoners. We demand an end to the internationally-mandated policy of Palestinian Authority “security coordination” that undermines the Palestinian struggle for freedom. And we urge the escalation of the campaign of boycott, divestment and sanctions against the Israeli state and complicit institutions and corporations, including HP, to create, as Sa’adat said, “a real economic cost for the industries of colonization.”

Free Ahmad Sa’adat and All Palestinian Prisoners!

Free Palestine!

Long Live International Solidarity!